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Maximum safe watt density for zinc plating solution heating

adv.    industrial heating systems

Q. Good day

I would like to know what is the maximum safe watt density for heating elements used in alkaline zinc plating tanks.

The main worry I have is what effect the very high temperature at the surface of the heating element will have on the brightener and what limit the watt density is safe to be.


Boris Siljanoski
- Perth, Western Australia
May 8, 2022

A. Hi Boris. Sorry, I can't answer your question, and I hope someone else can.

But based on my experience as "the plating shop guy" for a firm which helped the major insurance carriers investigate fire insurance claims, I can warn you that electric heaters in polypropylene plating tanks are far-&-away the biggest cause of plating shop fires (an unmonitored solution level drop through evaporation, tank leak, or inadvertent pump-out allows the heater to radiate directly on the plastic and ignite it).

Even with careful double safeties, I don't think you should increase the watt density beyond what is currently accepted practice.

Luck & Regards,

pic of Ted Mooney
Ted Mooney, P.E. RET
Striving to live Aloha - Pine Beach, New Jersey
May 2022

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